Briefly


North Beach’s Sotomish honored

North Beach High School’s Quay Sotomish was selected to participate in the Washington/North Idaho All-State Girls Basketball Game in June.

Sotomish is a senior guard. The contest is scheduled for 1:30 p.m., June 21 at the HUB Sports Center in Spokane.

Hundreds of lakes open April 26 for biggest fishing day of the year

Trout fishing in Washington hits full throttle April 26, when several hundred lowland lakes — stocked with millions of fish — open for a six-month season.

Although many waterways are open year-round, the fourth Saturday in April marks the traditional start of the lowland lakes fishing season. Hundreds of thousands of anglers are expected to turn out for the big day.

“The lowland lakes season opener is the biggest fishing day of the year,” said Phil Anderson, director of the Washington Department of Fish &Wildlife. “Lakes in every county are well-stocked, so there should be good fishing opportunities close to home.”

To participate, anglers must have a current Washington freshwater fishing license valid through March 31, 2015.

Freshwater fishing licenses cost $29.50 for resident adults 16 to 69 years old. Fifteen-year-olds can buy a license for $8.05, and seniors 70 and older can buy an annual freshwater fishing license for $7.50. Children 14 years of age and younger do not need a fishing license.

To prepare for opening day, Fish &Wildlife fish hatchery crews have been stocking nearly 16.5 million trout and kokanee in lakes on both sides of the Cascades. Those fish include 2.3 million catchable trout, nearly 115,000 jumbo trout weighing up to 11 pounds apiece, more than 50,000 triploid trout averaging 1½ pounds apiece, and millions of smaller trout that were stocked last year that have grown to catchable size.

Fish &Wildlife has been working to expand Internet-based resources to suit anglers of all skill levels, said Donley, who encourages anglers to check the “Fish Washington” feature at the department’s homepage — wdfw.wa.gov .

For those planning fishing vacations this spring or summer, Donley recommends Great Washington Getaways, another Fish &Wildlife homepage feature that showcases some of the state’s best family travel and fishing opportunities.

And, for those who prefer the show-and-tell approach, Donley recommends the department’s YouTube page — http://www.youtube.com/thewdfw — with “how to” fishing videos designed to introduce techniques for both new and seasoned anglers.

Of more than 7,000 lakes, ponds and reservoirs in Washington, nearly 700 have Fish &Wildlife-managed water-access sites, including areas accessible for people with disabilities. Other state and federal agencies operate hundreds more.

Anglers parking at Fish &Wildlife water-access sites are required to display on their vehicle the Fish &Wildlife Vehicle Access Pass that is provided free with every annual fishing license purchased. The passes are transferable between two vehicles. Anglers who use Washington State Parks or Department of Natural Resource areas need a Discover Pass. Information on the pass can be found at http://discoverpass.wa.gov/ .

Before heading out, anglers should check fishing regulations on the department’s webpage at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/

 

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